Explaining Brazil #163: Getting vaccines to the heart of the Amazon

With sparse transport infrastructure and precarious health services, getting medical supplies to Brazil's Amazon population is a huge challenge — something laid bare by Brazil's coronavirus vaccination push

Getting vaccines to the neediest people is a logistical, political, and organizational challenge, even at the best of times. Now, imagine how difficult it must be during a deadly pandemic, which has already claimed well over half a million lives in Brazil. Late in May, a team of doctors, nurses, and frontline workers from U.S.-based NGO Health In Harmony, the Federal University of Pará’s medical school, and Instituto Socioambiental embarked on a three-week expedition taking two boats filled with ice and 1,400 doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine to remote riverside communities in the Amazon. 

This week, we spoke with one of the people who helped take these vaccines into the heart of the Amazon rainforest.

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  • Marcelo Salazar is an engineer and Brazil’s program coordinator for Health In Harmony, a U.S.-based nonprofit dedicated to addressing the climate crisis through accessible healthcare.

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